MPI Can Improve Chemotherapy, Research Shows

Magnetic Particle Imaging (MPI) can improve chemotherapy delivery. The scientists at Michigan State University have found a new method can help in monitoring the chemotherapy concentrations.

And in patients, it will be more beneficial for keeping the treatments within the crucial therapeutic window. The Nano Letters has published these latest findings in September 2019.

Superparamagnetic particles and chemotherapy

Daily, new advancements are happening in the field of medicine. But still, there’s a lot of guesswork when it comes to the administration of chemotherapy in cancer patients. Too high a dose can kill healthy cells and tissues. That will trigger more adverse effects or may even result in the death of the individual.

On the contrary, too low a dose may result in stunning, instead of killing cancer cells. That will enable these cancerous cells to come back. However, in many cases, the return will be much stronger and deadlier. Bryan Smith is an associate professor of biomedical engineering.

He has invented a new process based on MPI – magnetic particle imaging to improve chemotherapy. Whereas, this method uses superparamagnetic nanoparticles as the sole signal source and a contrast agent to monitor the release of drugs in the body – at the site of the tumor.

Smith has stated that this method is completely noninvasive. And it can give doctors an instant quantitative visualization of how the drug (used in chemotherapy) distributes anywhere in the body. In the future, the use of MPI can facilitate doctors to see how much drug is reaching directly to the site of the tumor.

And it will ultimately help them in adjusting the amount of drug given on the fly. On the contrary, for a concern related to toxicity, MPI provides a visualization of the spleen, liver, and kidneys. That will aid in minimizing side effects. And will strictly ensure that the drug dose in each patient is lying within the therapeutic window.

Related: Scientific research links chemotherapy to trigger tumor spread within the body

Nanocomposite degradation and Doxorubicin release

Smith and his colleagues have used mouse models for this study. They have paired the superparamagnetic nanoparticle system with a commonly used chemotherapy drug – known as Doxorubicin.

The findings of the study have shown that this nanocomposite combination in mice models serves as an MPI tracer as well as a drug delivery system. MPI is a new imaging technology, providing a near-infinite contrast. And it is also faster than traditional MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) technology.

In combination with the nanocomposite, MPI may illuminate the drug delivery rates within tumors, especially in the ones that are hidden deep within the body. And with the degradation of the nanocomposite, it will begin releasing Doxorubicin in the tumor.

At the same time, the nanocluster of iron oxide will begin to disassemble, triggering the MPI signal changes. According to Smith, this process will enable the doctors to precisely see the amount of medicine reaching the tumor at any depth.

The study results have also shown that MPI signal changes have a linear correlation with the release of Doxorubicin with almost 100% accuracy. And this concept has enabled MPI innovation to observe and monitor drug release. That will improve chemotherapy delivery.

Smith has filed provisional copyright for this process. Moreover, the FDA has already approved the use of individual components of nanocomposite in human medicine. And it may further help to speed up the FDA approval for this new monitoring method.


Areeba Hussain

Areeba is an independent medical and healthcare writer. For the last three years, she is writing for Tophealthjournal. Her prime areas of interest are diseases, medicine, treatments, and alternative therapies. Twitter @Areeba94789300

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